Funeral Services for Frances were private. A visitation was held at Pedersen Funeral Home in Morris, Minnesota, on Friday, April 16, 2021. Burial was at Lakeside Cemetery in Herman, Minnesota.
Frances was born on October 11, 1916 to Jesse Wagner and Edith Frances (McGuffin) Diehl at home in Donnelly Township in Minnesota. She attended country school District 42 of Donnelly Township through eighth grade in 1928, and attended High School in Morris, Minnesota, graduating in 1933, before receiving her Bachelor of Arts degree from Hamline University in St. Paul, Minnesota in 1938. After graduating from college, Frances began teaching in Ashby, Minnesota. She taught many subjects including Latin, Physical Education, and Science, but Math was her favorite. While teaching, Frances began dating Frank Van Zomeren. The two were married on August 21, 1942, and moved to the Van Zomeren family farm near Chokio, Minnesota. Soon after, Frances and Frank bought their own farm near Donnelly, Minnesota. During World War II, Frances taught in Herman, Minnesota. When the war was over, she stopped teaching to become a full-time homemaker and help her husband on the farm. Before long, she had her hands full with three children: Kay, Lois and Robert. As the children grew older and needed less of her time Frances returned to teaching. She worked as a substitute in Herman before securing a full-time position teaching math (her favorite subject) in Hancock, Minnesota. While working there, Frances was instrumental in introducing computer programing to her students after learning it herself. Frances officially retired from teaching in 1982 but continued to tutor anyone who needed help with math for the rest of her life.
Frances enjoyed many lifelong hobbies. As a child she went on many trips with her family which sparked her love for travel. Frances and Frank continued this tradition with their own children and later, Frances made many trips to visit her children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and friends. At 102 years old, she went on a road trip from Arizona to Minnesota by way of Washington and North Dakota! Frances also loved to sew, knit, and crochet winning many ribbons at the fair over the years and making gifts for nearly everyone she knew. Finally, she enjoyed fishing, playing cards and dominoes, and doing jigsaw puzzles or just about anything else that involved spending time with family and friends.
Frances will be remembered for her kind, loving nature and her commitment to her community. She was very involved with her church and many civic organizations throughout her life, actively volunteering until she was 100 years old. Frances had a great passion for teaching and helping others succeed. She will be greatly missed by all who knew her.
Frances Allie (Diehl) Van Zomeren of Glendale, Arizona, passed away peacefully on Monday, April 5, 2021 at the age of 104. She moved to Arizona on her 100th birthday in 2016 after living in Minnesota her entire Life.
She is survived by her three children: Kay Brazeal of Glendale, AZ, Lois Jensen of Auburn, WA, and Robert (Debbie) Van Zomeren of Graham, WA; her grandchildren: Jon (Janie) Brazeal, Curt (Anne) Brazeal, Chris (Korinna) Jensen, Nick (Carrie) Jensen, Austin (Roxanne) Van Zomeren, Brooke Van Zomeren, Stefan Van Zomeren, and Kristjan Van Zomeren; great-grandchildren: Allie and Kira Brazeal, Carson Jensen, Ronan and Doolin Jensen, Skylar, Anika, and Hadley Van Zomeren; and numerous nieces and nephews. She is preceded in death by her husband Frank Van Zomeren, parents Jesse and Edith Diehl, brothers Russell and Ellwood Diehl, 6 brothers-in-law, 8 sisters-in-law, sons-in-law Dick Brazeal and Curt Jensen, and many more beloved relatives.
Pedersen Funeral Home in Morris is in charge of the arrangements. To send condolences to the family please visit www.pedersenfh.com. Donations may be made in her memory to: Lakeside Cemetery Association, C/O Neil Blume, 14531 240th Avenue, Herman, MN 56248 and Stevens County Historical Society, 116 West 6th Street, Morris, MN 56267.